Friday, December 3, 2010

Inception vs. The Social Network Part 1


Being that this is a Mammoth post the first one is almost always going to be a summary to the best of my ability, this is a little early to be doing this sort of post so bear with me and my underdeveloped blogging skills. Inception is an outstanding, unique, and interesting film with an extremely "new" feeling plot. Christopher Nolan movies tend to have a bit of mystique to them as you try to figure them out on the way (particularly The Prestige), and this has that same wonderful Nolan feel.

The plot is essentially "What if it were possible to delve into each others dreams and plant or withdraw information in the form of ideas (or is it ideas in the form of information?)?" And from there it takes on a heist sort of feel as Lord Dicaprio attempts for the first recorded time Inception, planting an idea in someone's head, as opposed to extraction which is only the removal of an idea. In order to do this he assembles an interesting team of dream delvers all the while still being unsure of his own reality due to his extensive time in the dream world (they encounter a lab full of 10 people who sleep most of the day, the lab owner says "They don't come here to go to sleep, they come here to wake up" or something like that. In order to plant an idea they have to assemble several layers of dreams ("A dream within a dream within a dream..." and place it at the lowest, most simple level.

Now, that sounds interesting enough as is but what's really amazing is the coordination between these layers. It's raining on the surface level, so in the second level there's enormous waves coming out of nowhere to splash against the building they're in, and in the third level an avalanche occurs. When it comes down to it that is why I feel this is the best movie of the year, the last hour or so of complex yet incredibly interesting plot and scene construction and the inter-connectivity of it all. Inception is a well acted, scripted, baffling masterpiece that makes for many repeat viewings to catch different things you didn't see before, though its certainly possible to get the entire plot the first way round, it is still amazing to see the interaction between the different layers of the final dream irregardless. The action is intense and interesting enough that even someone a bit slower could still enjoy it, but if you really like Nolan movies this is his masterpiece of the moment (though he has about 5 movies in my top 25), and perhaps his best, certainly most original film.

Grade: 10/10

The Social Network

The Social Network is quite excellent, with a variety of solid performances and a wholly contrived story designed to make the most boring thing imaginable interesting. No, I'm not talking about Facebook, who the hell knows whether or not that's interesting. This film is about Millionaires suing Billionaires. In a time of recession. That's right. Yet somehow, miraculously, David Fincher turns absolutely the worst idea for a movie ever considering the time when it was produced into a quite good film. The Supporting cast is outstanding the whole way through, and while the main character is a huge douchebag he's supposed to be a huge douchebag so it sort of works out okay.

Ironically despite Mark Zuckerberg (the real life billionaire founder of facebook) calling this a work of fiction, he is in reality a billionaire and therefore almost certainly a douchebag in real life. This is the sort of parallel that this film can make you draw, and it works for almost every character in it, even if it's absolute bullshit. His best friend is an incredibly nice guy who helps him out from the start and eventually gets "stabbed in the back" and has to settle for merely several hundred million dollars. THE HORROR! That's another thing the film wisely avoids at all costs, mentioning actual dollar figures. The Twins (minor characters yet fucking awesome actor does both, absolutely hilarious) earned 65 million dollars through their lawsuit, and Eduardo Saverin (the best friend) got the better part of a billion dollars for his lawsuit. It is impossible to feel bad for these people; yet somehow you sort of do get emotionally attached at the end no matter how cynical you are.

The Twins are the reason to see this movie, every scene they're in is absolutely hilarious and while the esteemed Armie Hammer (yep, that's his name) is unlikely to win Best Supporting Actor (3 people from this film may be nominated for it) he absolutely should. I would have no problem with David Fincher getting Best Director, considering how serviceable this movie is compared to the garbage IP that its based on. However, at its core this movie is still completely contrived and somewhat impossible to believe, if you look deeply into this movie at all you will see how ridiculously shallow it is. Of course, that is solely due to the core ideas behind the plot, and not really Fincher's fault, but it does still harm the movie substantially. The Academy tends to dislike Science Fiction, RT has this at 100% and Inception only got around 87%, though Imdb has them at 8.3 and 9.0 respectively, so due to the evil critics this is more likely to win Best Picture for the time being.

Grade: 8.5/10

 Oscar Watch
                                             Should Win  |   Expected Victor
 Best Picture                        Inception       |       The Social Network
 Best Director                    David Fincher  |        David Fincher
Best Actor                  Leonardo Dicaprio  |       Neither (Rush or Bale)
Best Supporting Actor      Armie Hammer |       Andrew Garfield

I'll update this watch depending on if something changes according to the random shit I read about movies.

Other News
No, Fuck Lebron, he is not the biggest story of yesterday, what is is that the mighty, Country Strong, pure American Hero Adam Dunn signed for 4 years/56 million from the Chicago White Sox. All I have to say is: HELL FUCKING YES... more on this later

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